Wives, submit to your own husbands, as to the Lord. For the husband is the head of the wife even as Christ is the head of the church, his body, and is himself its Savior. Now as the church submits to Christ, so also wives should submit in everything to their husbands. Ephesians 5:22-24
I get to substitute teach our Sunday adult Bible Study a few times a year so I always look forward to my chance to teach. But the last time I was a little suspicious of the timing. We were studying the book of Ephesians and our regular teachers asked me to teach chapter 5. Oh great, I get to teach the submission verses. Actually I really looked forward to teaching chapter 5. You see these verses on submission have been misused and misunderstood for years. Men have used today’s verses as carte blanche to run roughshod over their wives. To rule homes with an iron fist and to demand that their every whim be fulfilled.
That is not what women are commanded to do. They are to submit to their husbands just as the church submits to Christ. It is not a forced submission but a willing one. Similarly, women should not be forced to submit to their husbands but do so willingly. I will look at how this should work tomorrow.
Why would God want women to submit to their husbands? Not because He has something against women but because in any relationship someone needs to make the final decision and take the responsibility for that decision. This does not mean any discussion between spouses. What it does mean is that when there is a difference of opinion and a decision needs to be made it is the husband’s responsibility to make that decision. But it needs to be made in love.
Does that mean men have to make all the decisions in a marriage? Of course not. In fact the husband can and often does delegate that decision making in some areas, but God still holds the man responsible for those decisions.
Submission is not an easy idea to get our minds around today. We normally have a very negative connotation of the word submission. Possibly a better translation might be under the authority of, but that opens a whole different can of worms.
Have a blessed day,